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HomeTurkish Maritime NewsHappy 1 July Maritime and Cabotage Day!

Happy 1 July Maritime and Cabotage Day!

Today is the 95th anniversary of the 1st of July Maritime and Cabotage Day. Happy 1 July Maritime and Cabotage Day, the pride day of Turkish maritime, which is one of the fundamental guarantees of our right to cabotage and our independence at sea, our freedom and national sovereignty!

Cabotage, as a dictionary meaning, means ‘the business of operating a ship between the pier or ports of a country’. Maritime and Cabotage Day, which was announced for the first time on July 1, 1926, is celebrated with various events on July 1 every year to support ship management and to celebrate the acquisition of cabotage rights.


Cabotage is the privilege that a state grants to its ports regarding maritime trade. Since only their citizens can benefit from this privilege, it will make a significant contribution to the national economy, so the states have resorted to imposing a cabotage ban on foreign flagged ships. Some international conventions also contain provisions regarding the authority to impose a ban on cabotage.


During the Ottoman Empire, the empire had no cabotage right. Because, due to the caputulation rights granted to Western countries, foreign-flagged boats used to serve on the shores of the Ottoman Empire. However, in accordance with the Treaty of Lausanne signed on July 24, 1923, the caputilations were abolished. Thus, Turkey gained the right to cabotage.

Considering that Turkey is mostly a peninsula and its coastline is 8333 kilometers, this provided a great opportunity for Turkish maritime activities. After the necessary arrangements were made, according to the law no. 815 enacted on April 19, 1926, only Turkish boats were obliged to serve between Turkish ports. The law entered into force on 1 July that same year. This date has been celebrated as Cabotage Day since 1935.

According to this law; keeping machinery, sails and oars in rivers, lakes, the Sea of ​​Marmara and the Straits, in all territorial waters and in the gulfs, harbors, bays and similar places within them; Turkish citizens were given the right to transport goods and passengers with them.

Also; It was stated that the professions such as diving, piloting, captain, wheelman, crewman and similar professions can be fulfilled by Turkish citizens. It was accepted that foreign ships could only carry people and cargo between Turkish ports and ports of foreign countries.


In our country, the Cabotage Law, which was adopted on April 20, 1926, entered into force on July 1, 1926, and this law brought the provision that “Cargo and passenger transportation, pilotage and tugboat services between Turkish ports and coasts are carried out by Turkish Citizens and ships carrying the Turkish Flag”. He stated that these activities, which were previously open to foreigners, can now only be carried out by citizens of the Republic of Turkey. For this reason, we celebrate the 1st of July every year as the “Maritime and Cabotage Day”.

In 2007, the word maritime was added to the word cabotage, and the name of the holiday became Maritime and Cabotage Day.


The opinions expressed herein are the author’s and not necessarily those of News2Sea.

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